On October 13, 2022, the Social Security Administration announced there will be an 8.7% increase in Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits in 2023.  The 8.7% cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits payable in January 2023.  According to the Social Security Administration, Social Security benefits will increase by an average of more than $140 per month starting in January.  This increase is due in part to the current inflationary pressures on the economy and a demanding labor market that has dramatically increased salaries, also seen in HUD’s average increase of 11-12% in Area Median Income this year. 

Current RD regulation states: “7 CFR 3560.152(e) Tenant certification and verification indicates tenant households must be recertified and must execute a tenant certification at least annually or whenever a change in household income of $100 or more per month occurs.”  As this would mean interim recerts for most Social Security recipients, the Agency is developing a solution to align with other federal programs and prevent unnecessary work for management agents and tenants.  Please wait for further information before processing and submitting interim recertifications for January 2023 and beyond.  This does not apply to annual renewal certifications.  

We will notify our stakeholders as soon as the Agency has updated guidance to provide.  If you have questions, please feel free to reach out to the Servicing Specialist assigned to your property.